Does Reiki have to be serious? Does it mean I go into meditation by myself, and focus on becoming enlightened? Does it mean I don’t go to the movies or out with friends? Does it mean I stop having fun? Does it mean that I stop drinking coffee, or that I hide out from the real world so I can practice Reiki?
Sometimes it seems like Reiki is a very ridged system, with little room for differences. When I first began my study of the system of Reiki, it seemed complicated but the rules told me what to do and what not to do. As I progressed in my studies, I began to seek out different teachers. Indeed, along my Reiki path I have studied from several different teachers and that’s when things became even more complicated.
One teacher would say that one particular symbol was the most powerful, while another would say, “no, this one is.” One would tell me I must wear white and stop drinking coffee before a class and another sat down with me over a cup of coffee. One teacher would ridicule my techniques in front of the class and another told me Reiki couldn’t be done wrong.
I grew confused, but still I continued to seek and develop my Reiki skills. My confusion did not develop from the information I was receiving from these teachers; it developed because I was looking outside of myself for these skills. I studied every course, I read books on the subject, but what I failed to realize is that I already was what I was seeking.
There is an old Japanese proverb about a mythical creature also known as a Tengu, and it’s magic sword. One day a sword master decided he must have the magic sword and went in search of the Tengu. After a long journey, the sword master found her sitting in the forest with the magical sword by her side. The sword master said, “Please can I have your magic sword?”
“You must do something first,” she said. I will give you a technique to practice, but you must practice it diligently every day for 5 years. If you do not practice every day, you can not have the sword.”
The sword master left and for the next five years he practiced the technique the Tengu had shown him. After five years, he made his way back to see the creature and the Tengu was waiting for him.
“I can tell you have done as I asked; here is my magic sword.” However, rather than rushing forward to accept it, the sword master simply replied, “Thank you Tengu, but I do not need your magic sword anymore as I have realized that the real magic is inside of me.” The Tengu smiled and with one puff disappeared.
The tools of Reiki are much like that magical sword. They are there to teach us to focus our mind, and reawaken our own True Self. The symbols, the hand positions, and the precepts are important tools to help us focus on the true self. As we diligently practice the system of Reiki, something happens. We become these tools and no longer need them for support. Instead our own True Light is all we need. We become Reiki and find out that Reiki doesn’t have to be serious or hard. It is joy and love and compassion and wisdom and FUN!